This is a HAPPYGRAM from a very happy dog who was rescued by our volunteers more than a year ago.

Simon (black) and his brother Daniel (chocolate brown) were rescued from under a truck in an industrial estate on January 25th 2011. They were taken to the home of a volunteer where they had a luxurious soapy bath and thereafter were declared healthy by the neighbourhood vet.

Simon and Daniel when they were first rescued

In the weeks following their rescue, they had an idyllic life, getting regular nourishing meals and playing in the garden of their foster home. They also had a chance to learn good doggie manners from big brothers Eddie and Peter.  Not only that, they had regular playtimes with the neighbour’s children and they became very well socialized. Simon was more timid than Daniel who enjoyed regular skateboard rides with neighbour Tom.

Simon was soon adopted by the Tay family and he got a new name! Considering his glossy black coat, “Blackie” was a name that suited him well. He became best buddy to the three children of the Tay family, Charis, Carmen and Dylan.

In the meantime, Blackie got bigger and bigger and BIGGER... Now at the age of one year, he is a bundle of positive energy which he lavishes on anyone who is interested in his company. He is very good friends with other dogs in his neighborhood and enjoys his walks immensely. Even the teenage children in his new neighborhood queue up to take him for walks!

M.S recently paid a visit to say hi to Blackie and what a welcome she got! Perhaps Blackie could not say it in words, but he made himself clearly understood. Blackie said, “Thank you for rescuing me and finding me such a loving and wonderful family to spend the rest of my life with”.

Daniel was just as fortunate as his brother. He was adopted by a Scottish family who now call him "Dan" and love him to bits.  His family was relocated shortly after his adoption and he now lives in Western Australia.

Dan and his family. They have since migrated and taken Dan with them.
Happy dogs indeed. 


Molly's Updates

Since her amputation, Molly has been recovering slowly but surely; we are also glad to see her appetite improving. However, she appears upset and is trying hard to manage her emotions. Although Molly understands our good intentions and no longer has to struggle with the intense pain, she remains afraid and uncertain about her fate in this new environment. She had been living with the pain from her injured leg for so long, yet now she has to deal with the loss of her limb.

Molly feeling sorry for herself

Stitches where her limb had been removed

Molly tries hard to cope with her loss
Molly is very thin. Thankfully, she is eating well

Poor Molly needs a friend

Like humans, animals do grieve too and Molly is learning to cope with her loss, so she tends to be snappy at times. What she needs now is just some space and time alone; so we will respect that and keep by her side, waiting for her to recover physically and emotionally.

Fortunately, it is comforting to see Molly’s face light up during meal times, just like a true local foodie! Molly’s willpower has been tested time and again; she deserves to live in the warmth of a loving home, free from any more torment. Yes, Molly may have lost a leg but she certainly has not lost her amazing fighting spirit or capacity to love. Would you please take this sweet girl home to give her love and a peace of mind for the rest of her life? If so, please contact Fiona at fiona@hopedogrescue.org.

Molly and our volunteers are ever grateful to the generous donors who contributed to her vet bills and food supplies. She may not have pulled through without your support. Thank you all.

By Kyna Tan


Good Golly Poor Molly!

Not the nicest picture to start a blog post with and I know that many might not have the stomach for it, but I sincerely beseech everyone to stay on and read about the ordeal of strong sweet Molly.
It was slightly after 2am on a weekday when I received a text from a friend, Astha. She had spotted a dog that had 'lost a paw', loitering at her block in Bukit Panjang. Lost a paw?? Fiona and I didn't really know what that meant but we rushed down all the same.

A bag of bones; a sad painful sight

Nothing could quite prepare us for the sight. The dog had literally lost a paw. (This dog would later come to be named Molly.) It was dark and we can't really make out how bad the injury was but we can see a good bit of the bone where her paw should have been. As the stench of rotting flesh filled the air, it gave us an inkling of the severity of her wound.

On top of that, Molly was also emaciated. (Later we learned at the vet that she weighs only a mere 10kg.) She was ravenous despite that Astha had already fed her. We tried to take advantage of that and used food to lure her into the carrier. But I have come to realise that rescue work is not easy. Molly was very wary of human and refused to come near us even when there was food. This was going to be a long night. 

There was no way we can rush things. We had to approach her slowly so as not to startle her. Although she was in pain and hopping on 3 legs, she was still very nimble. The slightest bit of movement from us was enough to scare her into running in the opposite direction. In fact, I remained crouched most of the time. Amazing that I can still walk after that.

Since Molly refused to come near us, we left trails of food leading to the carrier. The plan was for Fiona to push her in and close the gate, while my job was to hide behind the carrier and tilt it with all my might so that she can't come back out. Every time she comes near the carrier, I would hold my breath. In part was because of the nauseating putrid smell and the other was because I was so afraid that she would run off just by me breathing. It sounds silly but we failed so many times that I was despairing we might never get to help her.

All too soon, we ran out of food because Molly would eat up the trails of food but never venture far enough into the carrier. Astha kindly offered to run to a 7-eleven to buy more canned food. There was nothing else that we can do but to patiently repeat this over and over again. I must have been getting pretty desperate, for I started to plead with Molly in my head. And after what seems like eternity, Molly finally trusted us enough to forage deeper into the carrier for food. That was the cue and we sprung into action. Success! We can all finally breathe a sigh of relief, now that we managed to have her safely in the carrier and get her the help that she needs, after two hours of trying.

It was almost 5am by the time we got home and poor Fiona had only 2 hours of sleep before she was due to get up and bring 2 strays for sterilization. I have the utmost respect for Fiona and her team. The amount of dedication and sacrifice that they put in is unbelievable.

Molly waiting for the van from Green Haven to take her to the vet
The next day, residents from Green Haven helped us bring Molly to the vet as her carrier could not fit into our small van

In the daylight, we can now see the extensive damage to her leg. You can't see it from here but it was infested with maggots. Apart from losing a paw, there was also a deep puncture hole on her front left leg, equally maggot infested. It looks like her leg was caught in something. A wild boar trap maybe? Does anyone know if there're traps in Bukit Panjang area?
Molly had remained surprisingly calm throughout it all. It was as though she knew that we were helping her. I believe that she has a really sweet and gentle disposition because she did not turn aggressive like other dogs normally would when they are in severe pain.

Sweet, strong Molly waiting for the vet to see her

The vet nurse at The Animal Drs trying to leash Molly and take her out but Molly was snappy, possibly from all the pain and uncertainty

After almost ten attempts, the vet nurse finally managed to throw the leash around Molly's neck. By then, Molly was very exhausted.

Trying to muzzle Molly, in order to test her for distemper (standard protocol for all new clients)

One can never ever have the strength and resilience of a dog / animal. If it was anyone of us, we would have fainted from the pain and excessive bleeding

I can't even bear to look at the wound, let alone suffer from this pain. I don't know how Molly does it but I know it's beyond me.

Did you see the fat maggots crawling around in the video?

Finally allowing herself to be patted by the vet nurse

Molly lying in the consultation room waiting for her blood test results. Results showed that she has low red blood count and was positive for heartworm. To undergo a surgical procedure would have been a high risk. We may lose her on the table

Having her wound cleaned

Molly was put on drip to stabilize her condition before surgery was carried out

Molly would have to be amputated from the shoulder below. But the vet says that she might die on the table because she had very low red blood count from excessive loss of blood and she also has heartworm. There was however no choice but to go ahead with the surgery, as her leg was septic and had swelled to twice its size. Without the amputation, she would most definitely die from the sepsis. Everyone at HOPE Dog Rescue was very worried and kept her in our prayers as she underwent surgery.
Dear Molly who loves life had battled death and won! She is currently warded and recovering at the clinic. But sad to say her ordeal is far from over. Her next hurdle now is to find someone to adopt or foster her. If there's no one to take her in, she would have to stay at a kennel.
This stump at her shoulder would likely get infected if she is to stay at a kennel because it is dirty and wet. After Molly's struggle, she deserves a loving home that can nurse her back to health.

Molly's surgery is estimated to cost about $3500. While every cent is well-spent, it is something that HOPE Dog Rescue can ill afford.

If you can help in any way, be it adopting; fostering; or donating towards her surgery; please email fiona@hopedogrescue.org

Story by Esther Low. Photo credits: Esther Low, Leslie Kok, Iris Ng.


Neglect IS Animal Cruelty

Eileen had chanced upon a seemingly lost shih-tzu when she was strolling along Ang Mo Kio Park with her boyfriend. A passerby told them that over the past week or so, this dog had been spotted loitering around the park on many occasions.

Upon bringing the dog to a better-lit area, Eileen realized that it certainly was not having a walk in the park. Only after picking off all the ants on the dog did Eileen realize what a terrible state it was in. With its fur shaved close to its skin, the tiny dog was a mere bag of bones with hardly an ounce of strength left in its frail body to even pick itself up. The dog’s nipples were also drooping, a sure sign that she had been used for breeding. To Eileen’s horror, she also found a huge lump on the dog’s underside. To complicate matters further, Eileen suspected that the dog could have been suffering from a urinary infection as she peed frequently, and her urine was flecked with blood strains.

The poor dog's skeletal frame when it was first rescued, reminding us so much of Prince

After a visit to the vet, the dog was estimated to be around 10 years old. The lump on her stomach was a hernia. An x-ray not only confirmed Eileen’s earlier conjecture on the dog's urinary infection, but also showed a horrifying image of a bladder stone larger than a ping-pong ball. It is impossible to even imagine the pain that the already miserable dog had been suffering as she dragged herself around the park, hoping against hope for help!

Protruding nipples and huge lumps on her stomach

X-ray of the huge bladder stone which caused her much pain and frequent urination

Whoever the owner was, we hope your guilt engulfs you. You left your poor dog to her own defenses when she fell seriously ill.

All was not lost, as HOPE volunteers learned of the dog’s story and offered to pay for her costly operation. The operation was an extensive one to remove her huge bladder stone, minimize the hernia, sterilize her, and remove the tartar accumulated on her teeth. Any operation entails risks, and given the dog’s age, malnourishment and current condition, we were terribly worried whether she could pull through a major surgery like this.

Preparing for the operation

Obvious lump bulging from her stomach

Looking at the size of her bladder stone, we can't imagine the extent of pain she had been going through alone

Painkiller patch (after a successful operation)

Post-op wound

Blood in her urine 
(the vet reassured us that this is a normal occurrence after such an operation)

It turns out that miracles do happen, and this little dog was one brave warrior that triumphed. After being discharged, it did not take long for her to embark on her road to recovery. With a hearty appetite, she has been gradually gaining weight. Perhaps we can soon see the sparkle, which should rightfully shine in every dog’s eyes, in this one’s again!

No more silent suffering
To support our rescue work, please email fiona@hopedogrescue.org Your kindness and generosity will allow us to save so many more dogs out there, waiting for us to give them hope.


Ally The Forsaken Dog

A beautiful dog that had a family but nobody wanted to have anything to do with it. In a case of a messy divorce, not only will kids suffer - the dog will, too. Dad did not want the dog as it reminded of him of his failed marriage. As I relate all this, please do not mistake me for being a busybody; I only want you to have a better understanding of what happened to Ally the beagle. To be exact, I have been following her case for the past 8 months.
November 2011
Doreen, a friend who helped me feed the strays, knew of a Chinese lady who was a nanny to the child of a middle-aged couple. This Chinese lady would sometimes recount to Doreen how the wife ill-treated their family dog. Doreen was horrified and told me the story. Apparently, the wife would splash boiling water over their dog whenever she felt depressed. As I probed further, it turned out that she had divorced her rich husband to be with a handsome model, but after that model left her, she grew depressed and vented her emotions on a defenseless dog which had complete trust in her.
I wanted to see the dog but the Chinese lady declined my request as she was worried about implicating herself, and possibly risking her job as their child's nanny. Fortunately, she and her husband took the injured dog to the vet. This dog never left my mind; I always made it a point to ask about the abused dog, in the hope that the couple may one day put her up for adoption.

Scarred on her back from boiling water

March 2012
Yet another case of anger outburst. I learnt that the poor dog had been scalded with boiling oil. This time, the wife actually disallowed the Chinese lady to let the dog see a vet. The Chinese lady felt so sorry for the dog, so she cleansed and applied medicine on her open wounds when they began oozing blood and pus. 
Even as she related this second incident to Doreen, the Chinese lady still refused to let us see the dog. All we knew was the block that she stayed at, so Doreen made an effort to go down to wait, hoping to get a glimpse of her but to no avail. We never gave up, and continued pestering  the Chinese lady to let us to see the dog.

Scarred yet again in March 2012 with hot oil

June 2012
Her conscience must have finally pricked her heart because one day, she revealed "the owner is giving up dog for adoption, please come down now”. Now that was my only chance!
Ally is her name. A female beagle about 4 years old caged up in a small little cage 24/7 over a period of 365 days. Enough space just for a drink and food bowl, enough space only for her to sit, so she had to sit on her pee and poo after she did her business. The cage was so tiny that Ally could only circle about. Worst still, the female owner claimed that Ally would not pee or poo to mess up the cage if she was deprived of water and food. But if not for the Chinese lady who fed her whenever she got the chance,  Ally would have been starved to death.
Scarred emotionally and physically from frequent human abuse

The owner sat in her room as I made my way through piles of stuff. When I peeped in to greet her, she was lying on the bed with her back facing me and a pillow over her head. Her reply was, “NO! I cannot give the dog away, it belongs to my daughter.”
Since we were already there, we let the dog out for exercise and she ran round and round the corridor with much excitement. It was so heart-wrenching to see and hear all those that happened to this sweet girl. I left the place with a heavy heart. As I spoke further with the Chinese lady, I realized that Ally was not the only dog that she owned. She had a golden retriever and mistreated her the same way; but the Chinese lady had since adopted the retreiver as her own.
A week later I heard from the Chinese lady that the kids were visiting the dog and they wanted to see the person who wanted to adopt Ally -- me. The next day we went down to the apartment to wait for the Chinese lady’s husband to bring the kids down. I asked for permission to walk Ally so we walked for 20 minutes walk along a stretch of grassland where the kids were keen to visit a local dog which had just given birth to 6 puppies. I noticed that her attention was already on the puppies as kids are far too young to understand what Ally had been through even though she did asked her mother why Ally got injured, the excuse was “accident”.
That was the ideal opportunity for me! I asked the kid to give Ally to me, promising that I will take good care of her and never she will get injured again. Ally is finally free!

Ally getting a full medical checkup at the vet

Ally carried by Jennifer

Ally trusts Jennifer tremendously

With HOPE's help, Jennifer was able to take Ally to the vet for a full medical check

I contacted HOPE Dog Rescue as I needed medical care for Ally. Fiona immediately made an appointment for me to take Ally to the vet for a full medical check and get vaccinated. All Ally's vet bills were taken care of by HOPE. They helped find a foster for Ally so that she would benefit from being in a positive home environment. Support HOPE and their work so that HOPE can rescue more dogs like Ally and those in need regardless of their circumstances.
I wish I had the means to adopt Ally but I already have three adopted dogs of my own. 
Written by Jennifer Chew

Note : Ally is presently safe with a foster and is available for adoption. She is estimated to be about 3 years old. The family who adopts her needs to have lots of patience as in most cases of adopting a rescue dog. She spins in circles because she had been caged for a long while and will need time and patience to correct that behaviour. She is rather active and is not paper trained. She is in good health except for a slight ear infection. To adopt Ally, please email alicia@hopedogrescue.org